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Rookie goaltender John Gibson leads Ducks to 2-0 win over Kings

Ice HockeyRyan GetzlafLos Angeles KingsDevante Smith-PellyAnaheim DucksDrew DoughtyFrederik Andersen

John Gibson made his Stanley Cup playoff debut a memorable one.

The Ducks’ 20-year-old rookie goaltender stopped 28 shots in a 2-0 victory over the Kings at Staples Center tonight. The victory evened the Western Conference semifinals series at 2-2. The two teams play Game 5 at Honda Center on Monday.

Gibson was recalled from the minor leagues on Friday after Frederik Anderson sustained an apparent leg injury in Game 3 on Thursday. Gibson was inserted into the starting lineup Saturday and stymied the Kings throughout.

His play made first-period goals by Devante Smith-Pelly and Ryan Getzlaf stand up.

Gibson made a handful of eye-opening saves. He made a bang-bang stop on Marian Gaborik, thwarting a two-on-one break in the first period. He turned away a Tanner Pearson shot with his left pad in the second period. With five minutes left in the game, Tyler Toffoli took a pass at the crease only to have Gibson deflect away his one-timer.

The Ducks had only three shots on goal combined in the second and third periods, but got enough offense in the first period.

A rush up ice ended in a goal by Smith-Pelly for a 1-0 lead with 3 minutes 58 seconds left in the first period.

Getzlaf brought the puck up ice and fired it behind the net. Corey Perry slipped a pass into the crease. Smith Pelly chipped a shot over goaltender Jonathan Quick’s left shoulder. It was his third goal of the playoffs.

Ducks then took advanatge of power play. With Tanner Pearson off for interference, the Ducks buzzed the net. Getzlaf whiffed on one shot at the crease, then backed in a second try from behind the net, with the puck going off Quick. Corey Perry and Sami Vatanen had the assists.

The Kings yanked Quick after the first period. He watched the remainder of the game from the bench.

Ducks 2, Kings 0 (end of second period)

Rookie goaltender John Gibson has made 21 saves through two periods tonight to protect the Ducks’ 2-0 lead over the Kings in the Western Conference semifinals at Staples Center.

Somewhere, Ken Dryden might be watching,

Gibson, all of 20, has a long way to go to get compared to the Montreal’s Hall of Fame goaltender. But the early numbers aren’t far off.

Dryden joined the Canadiens late in the 1970-71 season and went 6-0 to close the regular season.

Gibson won all three of his regular-season starts with the Ducks this season.

Dryden carried the Canadiens to the Stanley Cup championship, winning the Conn Smythe Trophy as the Most Valuable Player in the playoffs.

Gibson was making his first playoff start Saturday, and has stymied the Kings so far. He made a bang-bang save on Marian Gaborik, thwarting a two-on-one break. He reacted to turn away a Tanner Pearson shot with his left pad in the second period.

His play offset the fact that the Ducks did not have a shot in the second period. That made life easier for Kings goaltender Martin Jones, who replaced starter Jonathan Quick at the start of the second period.

Quick did not appear to be injured. He spent the period sitting on the Kings’ bench.

Ducks 2, Kings 0 (start of second period)

The Kings have changed goaltenders to start the second period tonight.

Martin Jones replaced Jonathan Quick, who gave up two goals on 11 shots in the first period in Game 4 of the Western Conference semifinals series at Staples Center.

No word whether it was an injury or a coach’s decision, but Quick is sitting on the bench. Jones has played in one playoff game this season.

Ducks 2, Kings 0 (end of first period)

Home-ice advantage remained a myth in Southern California.

The Ducks lead the Kings, 2-0, at the end of the first period in Game 3 of the Western Conference semifinals tonight at Staples Center.

A rush up ice ended in a goal by Devante Smith-Pelly for a 1-0 lead with 3 minutes 58 seconds left in the first period.

Ryan Getzlaf brought the puck up ice and fired it behind the net. Corey Perry slipped a pass into the crease, where Smith-Pelly chipped a shot over goaltender Jonathan Quick’s left shoulder. It was his third goal of the playoffs.

The Ducks then took advanatge of power play. With Kings forward Tanner Pearson off for interference, the Ducks buzzed the net. Getzlaf whiffed on one shot at the crease, knocked in a second try from behind the net off Quick. Corey Perry and Sami Vatanen had the assists.

John Gibson, the Ducks’ 20-year-old rookie, started in goal. He made nine saves. He denied the Kings’ Marian Gaborik with a save early in the game.

Gibson was recalled from Norfolk (Va.) after fellow rookie goaltender Frederik Andersen sustained what appeared to be a leg injury Thursday. Gibson was 3-0 in three regular-season starts, finishing with a 1.33 goals-against average and .951 save percentage.

The visiting team has won each game so far in this series.

Ducks 2, Kings 0 (15 seconds left in first period)

The Ducks take advantage of a power play.

With Kings rookie forward Tanner Pearson off for interference, the Ducks buzzed the net.

Ryan Getzlaf whiffed on a shot near the crease, then knocked in a second try from behind the net off goaltender Jonathan Quick with 15 seconds left in the first period.

Corey Perry and Sami Vatanen had the assists.

Duck 1, Kings 0 (3:58 left in first period)

The Ducks strike first in Game 4. A rush up ice ends in a goal by Devante Smith-Pelly.

Ryan Getzlaf brought the puck up ice and fired it behind the net. Corey Perry slipped a pass torward crease. Smith-Pelly chipped a shot over goaltender Jonathan Quick’s left shoulder.

It was his third goal of the playoffs.

Pregame

The Ducks will put rookie John Gibson in goal against the Kings tonight in Game 4 of the best-of-seven playoff series at Staples Center in place of rookie Frederik Andersen, who is injured, and veteran Jonas Hiller.

Anaheim trials two games to one in the series after defeating the Kings, 3-2, in Game 3 on Thursday night at Staples Center. The home team has yet to win in the series.

The 20-year-old Gibson, who was called up from Norfolk (Va.) on Friday, is considered one of the top prospects in the minors. He was 3-0 in April with the Ducks, including a shutout in his NHL debut and the victory that clinched the Pacific Division title for Anaheim.

Coach Bruce Boudreau played coy after the morning workout, though.

“He’s a good goalie and in the future he’ll be a tremendous goalie,” Boudreau said. “I don’t know if he’s today’s goalie.”

Andersen sustained a lower-body injury in the third period of Game 3. Hiller, who was in goal for the two losses in Anaheim, stopped seven of eight shots to earn the victory

Gibson made his debut with an 18-save shutout against the Canucks in Vancouver on April 7. He was also in net April 9 when the Ducks clinched the Pacific Division title by beating the San Jose Sharks, 5-2, making 36 saves. He stopped 31 shots in a 3-2 season-finale victory over the Colorado Avalanche.

The Kings will be without veteran defenseman Willie Mitchell and Robyn Regehr, who have unspecified injuries.

Kings defenseman Drew Doughty was not too concerned about who might be in goal for the Ducks.

Defenseman Drew Doughty said the Kings’ approach will remain the same no matter who’s in goal for the Ducks.

“They’re pretty similar goalies, though obviously one catches left and one catches right,” said Doughty earlier in the day, referring to the left-handed-catching Andersen and righty Hiller. “And one is a little better at puckhandling. That was really the only differences."

Copyright © 2014, Los Angeles Times
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Ice HockeyRyan GetzlafLos Angeles KingsDevante Smith-PellyAnaheim DucksDrew DoughtyFrederik Andersen
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